FWAERJ
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IND After John Clark

Sat Mar 24, 2012 9:06 pm

Several days ago, IND director (and former JAX director) John Clark left the Indianapolis Airport Authority.

Under Clark, IND opened their new terminal, but hasn't been very successful in attracting service from new or existing airlines. Like at JAX, Clark was also known at IND for heavy travel expenses.

Could this be the change that IND needs to get back on track?
"Did he really need the triple bypass? Or was it the miles?"
 
msp747
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RE: IND After John Clark

Sat Mar 24, 2012 9:15 pm

I don't think the head of Airport Authority is the reason they couldn't attract new service. It's the city itself, which probably has a good level of service for its size. Building a fancy new terminal isn't what airlines are looking for. It's people to fill the seats and make their flights profitable. If there isn't enough O&D traffic there, adding more airlines and flights isn't going to work. I think the "downturn" IND has seen over the past few years is just the market right-sizing itself.
 
FWAERJ
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RE: IND After John Clark

Sat Mar 24, 2012 9:29 pm

Quoting msp747 (Reply 1):
If there isn't enough O&D traffic there, adding more airlines and flights isn't going to work. I think the "downturn" IND has seen over the past few years is just the market right-sizing itself.

Keep in mind that some of IND's traffic comes from CVG's catchment area, but it used to be more before DL lowered fares from CVG. CVG's leakage reversal got to the point where IND ran an ad campaign in the Cincinnati market for the first time.

Quoting msp747 (Reply 1):
Building a fancy new terminal isn't what airlines are looking for.

  

IMO, the new terminal was a mistake for IND. The IAA could have renovated the old terminal (which was perfectly fine) for 1/8th of the cost. As a result of the new terminal, the average cost per enplanement at IND (except landing fees, which are low thanks to FedEx) almost tripled from one of the cheapest in the Midwest to one of the highest-cost. I also think that the high costs of IND are one of the reasons why you don't see NK there.
"Did he really need the triple bypass? Or was it the miles?"
 
slcdeltarumd11
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RE: IND After John Clark

Sat Mar 24, 2012 9:43 pm

Yeah I never understood why they built a new terminal there? Is increasing costs suppose to attract airlines or something? In a place like IND its a spoke the airlines don't care what it looks like.

IND is a spoke and any downturn or lack of expansion is probably because of the economy and airlines trying to offset higher fuel with high load factors. No airline has any interest in defending ind or anything. A flight to Europe seems a tough sell unless the subsidies cut any risk even then I would question the premium market to anywhere international from IND is enough to support a flight?

Look there are tons of airports in the same boat with tons of gate space and nothing else really exceptional to offer STL, RDU, COS, PIT, CVG all come to mind so it's not like ind is alone in extra gate space. The airlines seem to be focusing on the same cities nowadays and are getting more entrenched in their hubs than ever.
 
Cubsrule
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RE: IND After John Clark

Sat Mar 24, 2012 11:29 pm

Quoting FWAERJ (Reply 2):
IMO, the new terminal was a mistake for IND.

The new terminal isn't the problem. The old one was decrepit, and a JAX or MDW style rebuild would have been pricey. Moreover, it wouldn't have solved one of the big problems with the old terminal, which was really long taxis (particularly in from the 23s). The difference between somewhere like JAX and IND is that the JAX terminal was perfectly located, so it would have made no sense to move it.

The problem is how they built the new terminal. It should have been less ICN and more DTW north terminal, which is a nice facility but not nearly as flashy.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
FWAERJ
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RE: IND After John Clark

Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:16 pm

Quoting slcdeltarumd11 (Reply 3):
No airline has any interest in defending ind or anything.

NW started the IND focus city to defend their turf and their WorldPerks frequent flyer base (#1 or #2 after the DTW/MEM/MSP hubs). As the focus city was being built up, TZ's CEO George Mikelsons claimed that NW "slaughtered my baby" and forced TZ to exit their hometown airport. At the time, NW was seen as an aggressive competitor that drove LCCs out of their turf, so Mikelsons had a point.

After the DL/NW merger, most of the P2P flying was dropped from IND, with only the hubs (except CVG) and certain focus cities staying. DL did, however, open a Sky Club at IND (which was originally to have been an NW WorldClub).

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 4):
It should have been less ICN and more DTW north terminal, which is a nice facility but not nearly as flashy.

Bingo. The new terminal cost about $1 billion, and IND could have had a modern, functional new terminal for between $300-500 million.
"Did he really need the triple bypass? Or was it the miles?"